For many people, the words “compression socks” bring to mind images of your grandmother’s awful stockings. It may make you want to run for your fashion life, directly in the opposite direction. But here’s the thing: compression stockings are very useful medical tools when it comes to managing your vein health. And, not all of them work exactly the same way. In fact, there are three different levels of sock that your doctor may prescribe. Let’s explore these options, before reviewing why it’s so important to wear these circulation-boosting accessories.
Levels of Compression Garments
If we prescribe compression socks for your vein health, the garments we recommend will come in one of three categories:
- Mild, delivering between 15 – 20 mmHg. You can wear these socks every day, whether you’re taking a long flight, playing sports, or simply sitting around the house and hoping to keep your blood from pooling. Keep in mind that mild compression won’t be sufficient if you’re hoping to see medical benefits to your vein health.
- Moderate, delivering between 20 – 30 mmHg of compression. Typically, this level of compression can help manage varicose veins and mild swelling (edema). They could also help with post-surgical healing by boosting circulation.
- Strong, delivering between 30 – 40 mmHg of compression. As the strongest compression socks, these medical clothes can help you after a DVT (more on that shortly), and they can also help manage serious swelling.
Regardless of the level of compression we recommend for your needs, your prescription socks will have an important job to do. So it’s important to wear them when we tell you too, and for as long a period as we prescribed. But, in case you need a little extra push toward the compression stocking aisle, here are three great reasons to wear these most useful articles of clothing!
5 Compelling Reasons to Wear Compression Socks
Especially in the hot summer months, we know compression socks may seem unpleasant. But they have important jobs to do, so just give them a chance. Need more convincing? Here are the reasons why wearing compression socks is so important!
They could save your life.
Compression stockings put pressure on your leg, and that pressure pushes blood from the bottom of your legs into the deep venous system, helping blood return to your heart. Because of this, compression stockings are great tools for managing many types of vein disease. They can reduce or even eliminate edemas (swelling of the leg, ankles or feet) and can help reduce the risk of DVT (deep vein thrombosis, a potentially deadly condition that often develops without any warning signs.)
They can keep varicose veins from getting worse.
Varicose veins emerge when valves in your veins fail, allowing blood to pool. This pooling blood can cause your veins to bulge or darken in color, which is the point at which they become visible through your skin. Because compression stockings promote the return of blood from your legs to your heart, they can help prevent blood pooling and prevent new varicose veins from developing, or existing ones from getting worse.
Compression Socks speed up blood flow.
Even if you don’t have vein disease, boosting blood flow is beneficial. These socks do their job by mimicking the natural movement your body makes when pump blood from your legs into the upper parts of your body. With this help, your body can work more efficiently. Which may translate to more energy in your body…and that’s always a good thing!
Get help for all day standing and sitting.
What’s one common complaint among people who spend all day on their feet? Swollen legs (edema.) And compression socks can help with this area as well. How? If you need to stand or sit for hours at a time, fluid can build up in your legs. And that’s when you may notice swelling. At first, this may not seem like a big problem. But if you don’t address fluid buildup, the extra pressure could burst your veins, leaving you with open sores (ulcers) or infection. If that sounds scary, well…good. It is! Thankfully, however, wearing compression socks will minimize your risk by pushing fluid out of your legs while they work on your blood flow.
These days, compression stockings are so cute!
Back in your grandmother’s day, compression stockings were, admittedly, unattractive. In 2019, however, compression stockings come in an array of colors, sizes and prints. Basically, there’s a pair to fit every person’s individual style AND medical needs. So, basically, using the “ugly” excuse to avid compression stockings is no longer an option.
Vein disease can make your legs less attractive, but compression stockings can manage your symptoms AND help you look cute while doing so! Looking for a recommendation on a great pair of stockings? We’ve got so many options in our Houston area offices. So schedule your next appointment now and, while you’re here, be sure to check out our colorful selections!